PhD project (>2019):

Studies on vegetation, fire, climate and human history in the mid- to late Holocene. A contribution to protection and management of the forest-steppe biome in the Mongolian Altai


Environmental archives from different positions in the forest-steppe-biome of the Mongolian Altai, located in the centre of biodiversity in Mongolia, will be studied in a multi-proxy (pollen, spores, charcoal, biomarker, sediments) approach, radiocarbon dated and analysed by using multivariate statistics. These studies form a basis to gain a better understanding of the variability and dynamics of today?s forest-steppe-ecosystems and their biodiversity. They are important for a sustainable use as well as protection and management of the species-rich vegetation of the Altai region. In the study area it will be investigated how natural the existing vegetation is and how strong the influence of different prehistoric and historic human populations, e.g. the Scythians, Göktürks, Mongols and Kazakhs, has been. Furthermore, of interest is the importance of climatic variability and its influence on vegetation in the past. The palaeoecological studies are connected to two international research projects. The studies are of international importance for several disciplines (e.g. palaeoecology, botany, ecology, nature conservation, geography, archaeology).

PhD supervisor: Prof. Dr. Hermann Behling.

Funded by: DFG 2016-2019